If your house is like mine, mornings are a whirlwind!

The bathroom is crowded with everyone trying to get ready for the day, then it's a race downstairs and out the door!....WAIT!  What happened to breakfast?

It's the most important meal of the day for adults and for kids!  But it's often an afterthought because our lives have gotten exponentially busier.

Breakfast is a healthy habit that will determine how your child will feel for the rest of the day!  If they don't eat breakfast they will be cranky, grumpy, sluggish, unable to focus, inattentive.  Kid's that don't eat breakfast are also 5 pounds heavier, exercise less, & choose unhealthy foods throughout the day.

Not all breakfasts are created equal!  Stay far away from juice, cereal, doughnuts, muffins, toaster pastries/waffles, cereal bars, & other things like that.... though they are convenient they offer no nutritional value and can actually make your child FEEL worse because they will get a huge rush of energy and completely crash an hour later.  Protein and fresh fruits and veggies are the key to starting their day off right!  Remember, happy healthy kids need a minimum of 7-9 servings of fruits & veggies daily, get a few in first thing. 

Here are my favorite quick and easy breakfast ideas:

1.  Dinner for breakfast.  If there is leftover dinner it's fair game for breakfast.  I've given my girls salmon with fresh tomato, and a glass of milk, grilled chicken and yogurt, you name it!  Some kids don't like breakfast food, so don't hesitate.

2.  Eggs and veggies.  Eggs are a snap to prepare in the morning.  Add a little cheese and a variety of veggies like spinach, tomato, peppers, red onion, broccoli, fresh basil or other herb, etc..the possibilities are endless.

3.  My girls favorite...Smoothies!  Portable and super quick.  Blend plain Greek yogurt, banana, frozen berries, milk, and 2-3 tablespoons of coconut oil.

Coconut Oil
I used to always cook with vegetable oils mostly because that's what my mom cooks with and that's the way I was taught to cook.  AND we've also been told that these vegetable unsaturated oils are more "heart healthy" and are supposed to protect us from heart disease. It turns out, that was a really BAD idea as they actually do more harm than good. 

Here is why.  Unsaturated oils like vegetable oil, corn oil, safflower oil just to name a few oxidize when exposed to any heat, even room temperature heat.    The problem with oxidation in oils is that it makes it rancid and produces Free Radicals.  Free Radicals are molecules that are missing a critical component and steal what they need from your healthy cells, altering your DNA which accelerates aging and over 90% of all diseases we suffer from today.  This is BAD, and why you should move your family away from these oils, and stop cooking with them.  Cooking with these oils accelerates oxidation which produces more Free Radicals.

One other really cool fact that I as a mom found really interesting is that Coconut Oil contains Lauric Acid, which is a natural compound found in breast milk.  Lauric acid is super important because it strengthens your immune system.

I've recently moved over to cooking with Coconut Oil.  Coconut Oil is saturated and heat stable so that it doesn't get damaged when you cook with it, and it does not oxidize... so NO FREE RADICALS are getting into my kids bodies destroying their healthy cells.  You can cook with it, bake with it, and mix it up for dressings and other healthy treats.

Other benefits:  
                                PROMOTES heart health
                                SUPPORTS the Immune System
                                Gives you ENERGY
                                SUPPORTS healthy metabolism
                                PROMOTES weight loss
                                MAINTAIN normal Cholesterol levels

It also doubles as an excellent moisturizer for your skin :)

Be choosy when purchasing Coconut oil.  I use Fresh Shores Extra Virgin Coconut Oil that I find in my local health food store.  Find one that is cold pressed, organic, made with fresh coconuts (instead of dried "copra" used in cheap oils), not refined or bleached.

Omega 3 EFA
Hearing all the nutrition jargon that’s out there can no doubt be confusing.  My mom asks me all the time, “Honey, which one is good again?”  With all the things we have to remember in our busy lives it’s hard to really take it in.  Here are some easy definitions and tips you can and must remember!  Bookmark this if you need to because as you will see it’s so important and vital to your health.

Omega 3 and Omega 6 are essential fatty acids that our body cannot make on its own so we must get them from the foods we eat.  Our bodies’ need both to achieve optimal balance.  

Omega 6 is an essential fatty acid extracted from nuts and seeds and thus found in most vegetable oils and soybean oils.  It’s abundant in sweets, fast food, crackers, and most anything processed.  You without a doubt consume this most often and while your body does need it, it’s very dangerous in the quantities we have become accustomed to.

Omega 3’s are found in olive oil and cold water fish such as salmon and herring.  Unless you are really trying, you consume this much less which contributes to poor health and disease.

Why is this?

Omega 6’s fosters inflammation in our bodies.  That just sounds bad doesn’t it?   Omega 3’s have the complete opposite effect, they fight inflammation in our bodies.

Our Western culture has made our diets ultra rich in omega 6 fatty acids and dangerously lacking omega 3’s by an average ratio of 16:1!  Your ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 fatty acid ratio should be about 1:1 or 1:2 for optimal health and balance.

This imbalance is not doubt contributing to chronic inflammation and diseases such as asthma, heart disease, cancers, auto immune diseases, obesity, depression, and stroke to name a few.

Looking back on my first 25 years I rarely consumed Omega 3’s.  My mom didn’t like fish so we never ate it, and all cooking was with butter or vegetable oil.  In her defense back then nutrition was not talked about like it is today. 

When I was 29 I was diagnosed with an auto immune disease that doctor’s believed I had since early childhood.  Now I’m not saying that this imbalance alone caused it, but I’m sure it was one contributing factor.  As a mother of 2 I am very aware of what I am putting into my daughters’ bodies.  I want them to have balanced nutrition for a healthy life.

Healthy eating tips:

·         Replace your vegetable oils like corn, sunflower, safflower, soy, and cottonseed with extra virgin olive oil for cooking and making salad dressings.

·         Eat less processed and fast foods.

·         Consume more fatty fish like sardines, salmon, herring, black cod, and mackerel,

·         Consume more foods with flax seed which is naturally rich in omega 3’s

·         Buy eggs fortified with omega 3

·         Walnuts, scallops, cauliflower, cabbage, shrimp, cod, and tofu are also good sources of Omega 3’s.

·         Read labels!  You can find so many things fortified with healthy omega 3’s

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How To "Get" Your Kids to Eat Fruits & Veggies (And Have Them Asking For More!)